Hebburn has emerged as the wedding punch-up capital of the region.
Police in the town have been called to a pair of dust‐ups so far this year, according to a Northumbria Police investigation into the reasons why wedding guests and funeral mourners sometimes mark the event with a 999 call.
“These are times of incredible emotion” GP Taylor
For most people, weddings and funerals are highly emotional events which bring together families for a boozy get‐together, but the potentially explosive cocktail of alcohol, tears and infighting has been blamed for a spate of weddings ruined by the police turning up. The probe has also revealed light-fingered wedding guests and mourners are almost as much of a problem.
One victim in South Shields was robbed of some cash. The information was brought to light through the Freedom of Information act, and revealed that since the start of 2015 the boys in blue in Northumbria have been called to five services around the region.
Best-selling celebrity author GP Taylor, who was a vicar before leaving the church a decade ago, knows only too well the problems.
In his 13 years as a man of the cloth he said he witnessed some incredible sights at weddings and funerals ‐and claimed alcohol was usually at the root of them.
He said: “There was one incident in when the wedding service went well but once this family all left the church and moved outside, they all just started fighting.
“It got so out of control they brought a dog handler in. It was absolute carnage.
“There were people running around with blood on their shirts, which had been ripped in the scuffle while people were screaming and crying.”
“I said to them ‘This is a house of God and a place of peace!’ But it didn’t stop them, and it just kicked off.”
However, Northumbria’s offences pale in comparison to those committed elsewhere in the country.
In South Wales, someone working at a wedding reception exposed themselves to a guest, while in East Yorkshire a bride’s parents were arrested after hurling expletives at the groom’s family.
While most services pass without incident, Mr Taylor added: “The trouble is these are times of incredible emotion, and any time alcohol is involved and families are brought together that can be fractious.”